Reports: Heat president Pat Riley meets with Luol Deng in Chicago

By James Herbert | NBA writer

Luol Deng is a highly sought-after free agent.
Luol Deng is a highly sought-after free agent. (USATSI)

More Offseason Analysis: Coaching changes, news | Free Agency | Draft

Update: The meeting took place, and Pat Riley was "very charming," per NBA.com's David Aldridge. It's probably for naught, though, as Luol Deng wants upward of $10 million per season, per USA Today's Sam Amick. This is all dependent on what Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade decide to do, and the two sides will reportedly talk again next week when Miami's salary situation is clearer.

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The Miami Heat are recruiting forward Luol Deng in free agency, and president Pat Riley will meet with him Saturday in Chicago, according to Yahoo Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski.

Riley will presumably pitch Deng on the idea of taking less money to play for a championship. Deng only once got as far as the Eastern Conference finals during his time with the Bulls, and the 10-year vet would make the Heat the overwhelming favorites to reach the NBA Finals next season, if they are not already. He would be a fantastic complementary player in Miami, who would fit seamlessly into coach Erik Spoelstra's system on both ends.

This is likely the last big payday of his career, though, and the Heat might get priced out. He reportedly does not intend to take "significantly less" to join them.

If Miami can't get Deng, with Kyle Lowry and Marcin Gortat off the market, it is going to have to jump on some of the lower-tier free agents quickly. Riley surely has backup plans, but it's worth a shot trying to get Deng to come aboard.

 
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